Monday, July 31, 2006

of summer festivals...

Well, Summer is officially here. I know that sounds strange for everyone living in America. You are thinking, well yeah, summer's been here for like 2 months already! Well, Japan's strange. Summer is just now starting. And I get a nice vacation to go with it. The weathers been really strange this year though. Rainy season started early and lasted late (causing some unfortunate flooding in some parts of the country). And the past few days have been suprisingly cool. Such strange weather...

Anyway, today was my first day of vacation. These past weeks seemed really busy, but I suppose they were pretty normal. My classes are going well. My students still seem to like me. Some are plotting my marriage to make me stay in Japan forever. The parents seem to like me and the kids have finally warmed up to me. I've fallen pretty much into a nice routine, which for me is not so great. It means all my bad habits are in full swing. I need to work on that a bit this summer.

Things with the band are still good. I really feel included. Sometimes they even call me when I'm not there to make sure that I know where they are. It's really a nice feeling. I will have another "home party" this month for them. I'll cook hamburgers. Hopefully it works out. This of course forces me to do some major cleaning of my house. Which is good because my house definitely needs to be cleaned.

Today I saw some small festival celebrations happening. I guess the main ones start tomorrow and the next day. Last year it was very interesting for me to see the festivals. But this year, it just makes me sad. Watching the people carrying the heavy shrines... It just makes me realize again and again how sad it is. The people are just like the shrines, pretty and happy on the outside, but empty and hollow on the inside with no power. I ache so much for the people here. It's times like this that I feel so small and helpless. There are so many people who need to join God's family. I want them all to be saved. But what can I do? Sometimes I feel happy with the work I am doing here, the relationships I am building, the classes I am teaching, the conversations I am having. But it's still so small. Have I really done anything at all? I want so much to see this country freed from the false gods that hold it captive. The only thing I can do is pray. It seems like such a small thing. I love this country so much.

I don't know if I should go out tomorrow or not. The festivals might overwhelm me. But I just found out I'm meeting someone on Wed. in the middle of the festivals. I guess I'll have to face it sooner or later.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006


Couldn't think of a title.

I'm sick. Stupid sinuses. They are always so hard for me to get rid of too. Yuck. Hopefully it will go away soon and I won't have to go to the doctor. It really is a pain to go to the doctor when you can't communicate so well on your own. And it's a pain trying to find someone who speaks English who is willing to take time out of their day and go with you. :-(

Things are still going OK. Got a package from my parents. Pop tarts, cereal and a cute top from my mom. Along with some DVD's I asked for. We are going to watch one in class today. Horray for DVD's.

And finally my co-worker got married last Friday. I don't know whether to be annoyed or amused by all the people who ask me how the wedding went and then ask me when I'm going to get married. I guess I'm at that age. Even the old lady in the bakery across the street asked me if I was next. *sigh* Don't get me wrong, I would certainly like to be next. Just doesn't seem very likely at the moment.

But after watching so many wedding preparations, it almost makes me not want to have a wedding. Seems like if you do it the way you want, everyone is just upset. I'm not sure why. After all, it's your wedding right? But, I don't know.

And strangely enough. I get sick, and do my laundry. Go figure.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

of the weekend...

Well, my weekend was pretty nice. Had my Bible Study on Saturday then went to lunch with two of the students. It was nice. Then I came home and got ready to go to the live show for the band. They were playing at a club again. This time it was for a whole hour. It was a really nice show. The sound was good and everything. I had a good time.

My Japanese is getting in a slump though. It comes and goes. Lately I've been feeling really dumb when people try to talk to me. It always seems like a group effort to have a conversation with me. Someone who doesn't speak English (like Mako or Miho) will try to tell me something, usually complicated, and I of course don't understand. So they stop everyone's conversations by calling out "What is this in English?" And everyone has to become involved in the conversation so that I understand. It's rather embarrassing. Also I tried watching a TV show only in Japanese yesterday. I really didn't understand anything. It's frustrating.

The bad news of the weekend is that Sing got sick. He has a fever. He tried playing on Sunday night, but it ended up with Mako on guitar and Shi-shi came (he's the other guitarist for the other band they are in. He's new and has recently been coming to Jam with them on Sundays if he can. It's rather fun to watch) so there were two guitars. Sing just sang, and occasionally hit the drum. I felt really sorry for Sing. He looked pretty bad. I hope he gets better soon.

Monday I met some girls for lunch. One was Japanese, the other was Chinese. We went to this really nice restaurant. I really liked the food there. And it was pretty reasonably priced too. It was a nice afternoon. Then I just kinda bummed around. I should have been doing things, but I didn't. I'm often that way. But there was a spectacular thunderstorm last night too. Very loud. If I had been in Texas, it would have been tornado weather. But they don't have tornadoes here.

But Thunder storms are different in Japan. They only last like 30 mins. Its so strange. Not that I'm complaining. Just different from the thunder storms I'm used to. Also, they aren't so beautiful here. The main reason being you can't really see the sky. In West Texas, I can see for miles and miles and so I can watch the lightening strike the ground and light up the sky and it's very beautiful. Here, you just see cloudy sky, and a flash and then hear the really loud thunder. Not as dramatic or romantic. Oh well, guess you can't have everything.

Well, today begins another work week. Horray horray. Mika will be back this week and the next because Tami's getting married and can't work right now. I'm looking forward to that. I miss Mika.

I'm pretty sure summer's officially here now. I'm pretty much always sticky and icky when I don't have good AC in a room. (like when I'm in my house...) Fun stuff, humidity.

All right, that's about all for now. I really don't have anything too interesting to say at the moment. I should get ready for work now. Possibly eat before work. That's probably a good idea.